Love At First Sight: Dez and Taylor’s American River Resort Wedding

To believe in the power of love at first sight is one thing, but to trust it enough to propose to someone after knowing them for just six weeks is something completely different. The probabilities of meeting that person might not be high, but it’s exactly what happened to Dez and Taylor - and their love is proof that it’s real. After convincing Taylor that he was serious about his proposal (and brushing off the response from a child passing by who told him that he shouldn’t ask Taylor to be his wife - not the answer he planned on getting), the couple opted to elope, using their day at the American River Resort in Coloma, California as a chance to celebrate with friends and family.

In lieu of the traditional way most couples do wedding ceremonies, Dez and Taylor went the laid-back route. Their wedding ceremony, much more of a celebration than a huge event, was super cozy and joyful. The American River Resort proved to be the perfect scenic site for the down-to-earth, beach-loving couple - capturing incredible pictures was easy. Not only was the fall weather perfect, but the two couldn’t stop making each other laugh - a photographer’s dream.

From the sunset forest ceremony that overlooked the American River to toasts that made everyone laugh, each moment felt meant-to-be and special. To match the fun-loving vibe, the dessert assortment was out of this world, including doughnuts, s’mores and, of course, cake. The couple and their small group of guests (about 50 in total) danced the night away under the stars.

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A Charming Riverside Wedding with Tyler + Channey

Although Tyler and Channey met each other at Humboldt University, it seemed like they had been together forever. One of the sweetest couples we’ve ever had the pleasure to work with, Tyler and Channey’s wedding was perfect from start to finish. From laughter and tears, to dancing and kissing, there’s nothing better than knowing that no matter which moment is captured, it’s going to be the right one.

The couple’s wedding was held at the River Ranch and Lodge in North Lake Tahoe, which was the perfect outdoor, riverside location for this down-to-earth, laid-back couple. The River Ranch and Lodge is known for its beautiful views, especially its nooks that cozy up against the Truckee River - the famous Tahoe mountains in the background.

We loved how Tyler played the guitar for his bride as she walked down the aisle, looking absolutely stunning in her dress. And while we’ve been to plenty of weddings, this was the first where we got to see an actual “tying of the knot” - parents coming up to help the couple. It might have also been the first where we got to see the traditional cake cutting ceremony turn into a full-fledged (yet endearing) food fight between the bride and groom. (Don’t worry, they made up with a kiss that rivaled their first kiss as Mr. and Mrs.)

Plenty sweet and a whole lot of fun, it was the picture-perfect bohemian style wedding that we just can’t get enough of. Oh, and then there was the DJ, who transformed the reception into a full-on nightclub - to say that the wedding was wonderfully fun is a complete understatement.

The whole day was just filled with love, warmth, laughter - and a whole lot of great photos to remember it by.

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PHOTOGRAPHY: VILD PHOTOGRAPHY | VENUE: The River Ranch Lodge |  CATERING: The River Ranch Lodge | CAKE: Lake Tahoe Cakes | FLOWERS: Hazel Castillero |
DJ: Music in Tahoe- Isaac | HAIR/MAKE-UP: Art of beauty | DRESS: Anthropologie | BRIDESMAID’S DRESSES: David’s bridal | JEWLERY: Randels in Placerville |
GROOMS ATTIRE: Men’s warehouse | OFFICIANT: Kelly laCantolla

Kelly and Hal's Pretty Picnic Wedding in Lake Tahoe

It takes a special touch to turn an everyday picnic ground into a magical, romantic wedding venue, luckily, Kelly and Hal have just that.

Easy-going and outdoorsy (the couple loves to spend time fencing, climbing and slacklining), Kelly and Hal chose to have their ceremony at Regan Beach, while their elegant reception took place at the Kiwanis Gazebo at Bijou Community Park. As a designer, Kelly’s eye for details proved invaluable, completely transforming the intimate outdoor venue with graceful finishes, like subdued pops of coral zinnias, creamy roses, and citrus-shade ranunculus, delicate lace table runners, simple taper candles, and pennant flags crafted from the kind of antique material that looks like it has been treasured for decades.

Kelly chose to wear a tea-length wedding dress, which perfectly complimented the laid-back, charming vibe, and, in my opinion, looked even more glamorous than some of the longer, more traditional versions. And, because of the simple grey vest worn by Hal, who opted not to wear a jacket, every attire detail felt balanced and “just right”, nothing too contrived, nothing unnatural.

With a truly intimate guest list (there were about 25 to 30 guests in total), Robert and I were able to capture some wonderfully candid moments of the couple and their families, all of which highlight how beautifully relaxed the entire day was, from walking down the aisle to playing lawn games at the reception.

If there’s one thing I learned from this seemingly simple and sweet wedding, it’s that attention to details really pays off and that all weddings should have a slackline set up! What a fun idea!

/ M

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